Africa Needs More transport infrastructure- UNECA

Quality Roads: 60,00Km deficit The UN Economic Commission for Africa, UNECA, has just published a report on the effect of AfCFTA, on the transport sector. It says that the FTA will nearly double intra-Africa trade by 2030. This will raise demand for transport services by nearly 50 percent by 2030 resulting in new demand for transport equipment- Trucks, Wagons, Airplanes, and Marine Vessels.  In turn, the increased equipment will put pressure on the existing transport infrastructure- roads, Railroads, Airports, and Sea Ports. This demand spiral will cost US$571 billion to meet, says the report.  The report quantifies gaps in the sector that could stymie the FTA’s effect and the cost of meeting the new demand for transport infrastructure and equipment. Transport equipment will cost $411 billion while infrastructure will cost US$160 billion says the report. The bulk of the costs will fall on the private sector, that is, Truckers who will cough up S$345.5 billion for the more than two mi

Decommissioning " fiction analysts" In East Africa

 The Tanzania Railways Corporation is inching towards commissioning the Standard Gauge Railways in the near future. At the same time, it will decommission a lot of “fiction analysts and Writers” as the reality of the line hits home. In fact, the process has already begun.               Analysis of Hardware for each of the three lines Corporation Locomotives Coaches wagons Total ERC 41   1130 1171 KRC 57 40 1620 1717 TRC 17 80 1420 1517 The three top largest and most robust economies in East Africa will each have a Standard Gauge Railway line. There will be no room for fiction anymore. The narrative will shift to “what is,” from “what should be.”  We will be ticking the boxes on each line and comparing them. Two of the boxes can be checked already, the costs and quality of the lines, and the c

Why Tanzanians are elated

T a nzania's President Suluhu Hassan:  her charm offensive paying off Tanzanians are elated that for the first time, the country posted a trade surplus with Kenya. According to media reports, the country posted a US$90.15 million surplus against Kenya in the period January to September 2021. Tanzania exported US$ 396.8 million worth to Kenya compared to Kenya’s exports worth $305.3 million, reported The Citizen newspaper. This publication has not independently verified the data from the unnamed official source. However, we have no reason to doubt it because the December edition of Leading Economic Indicators , published by the National Statistics Office in Kenya, shows that Kenya’s exports to Tanzania rose 252 percent over the same period. Further, the Statistical Bulletin published by the Central of Kenya shows that for the first time in years, Tanzania’s exports to Kenya breached the US$30 million mark for four consecutive months to June 2021.  Thus the report is probably a

Can China takeover sovereign assets? Has it?

Debt trap Meme: Trading in fear The idea that a sovereign country can lose its asset to another over unpaid debts is simply a Zombie idea. Zombie ideas are lies couched in economic jargon. They are believable but are false hypotheses. Following the failure of similar ideas as “the trickle-down effect,” “High wages kill Job creation,” and “efficient market” hypotheses, “Debt trap diplomacy” is the fad. However, beneath the veneer is the fear of China’s emergence as an economic powerhouse that challenges the West’s dominance. In just about 40 years, China’s GDP has grown from $245 billion in 1976 to $16 trillion in 2021, second only to the US whose GDP is estimated at $22 trillion in 2021.  It has drawn some 800 million people out of poverty and into the middle class over the same period. China has leapfrogged entire Western Europe and Japan in 45 years. In the process, disrupting the West’s dominance over the world’s resources and markets. This is the source of anti-Chinese vitrio

Africa should lead in green Industrialization

A Lithium-ion Battery AFRICA should leverage its abundant mineral and green energy wealth to lead in the fourth industrial revolution, experts say. And in this respect, the Democratic Republic of Congo should be the nerve center, they add.  The country is rich in mineral wealth and water. It is thus, suitable for the production of cathode precursor materials for Lithium-Ion batteries, a study has established.  The government has accepted a proposal to set up a Special Economic Zone for this purpose, we can report. Lithium-ion batteries power everything from your Mobile phone to Airplane batteries. Now that the world is shifting to clean energy to power cars, Lithium-Ion is also powering electric vehicles, EVs. The Democratic Republic of Congo produces 70 percent of the world's cobalt, the basic Mineral in Lithium-ion batteries. Cathode precursor materials are the intermediate material between cobalt and finished cathode material. Currently, precursor materials are produced in C

Has the SGR benefited anyone?

  A wind power project: Increases power supply  and lower cost of electricity Economists and Engineers, at the conception of a project, begin with a theory of the potential benefits the project will engender to the project area. The benefits at that point are purely anecdotal but are feasible. They then move on to study the area’s characteristics, economic and physical, determine the size of the project service area, the population, and economic activities. The Project’s financial costs and pricing of the service come at the tail end of the study. For instance, at conception, a piped water project is justified on the strength of the economic, health, nutrition, and welfare benefits.  A road project is justified on ease of access to markets, faster travel time, and increased economic activity in the project area. All-weather roads generate more economic activity due to ease of access.  These activities are assigned monetary values which are compared to the financial cost of building t

The West treads a path beaten by China

Kenya's SGR build by China: Africa could do with a trans- Africa Railroad. The West has woken up to the reality that investment in infrastructure development is simply not for the private sector. The returns from such investments are way outside the private sector’s definition of returns.  For the private sector, returns are purely financial- profits and dividends. However, returns from infrastructure are both financial and economic. The financial returns count for little as economic returns outweigh the financial returns. Infrastructures are enablers of economic activity as they provide goods and services that raise the productivity - and profitability-of other sectors. That is why governments invest in infrastructure to catalyze robust economic growth. In the last month, the west has launched a total of US$1.5 trillion plans to invest in infrastructure. These are; the US$ 1.2 trillion Infrastructure Act in the US, and the $340 billion Global Gateway initiative launched last w